After the U.S. Supreme Court justices showed signs of support for parts of Arizona’s immigration law, the bill’s architect, Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach is hopeful more legislators will support the bill in the future. The 2010 law in Arizona requires police officers to check the immigration status of people they suspect do not have U.S. citizenship. If the individuals cannot provide proper immigration forms, they will be deported back to their home country.
Kobach has supported the controversial law’s passing in several states, yet he knows that it will be difficult to pass in Kansas. The GOP as well as some influential businesses are split over the bill, which has prevented the bill from being passed so far.
Some businesses in Kansas who oppose the bill created the Kansas Business, Workers, Communities Partnership Act, a program which is calling on the federal government to allow undocumented immigrants whose deportation cases are low-priority to work hard-to-fill jobs. Kobach argues that the businesses are not in favor of undocumented immigrants, but rather would like to continue to pay minimum wages to those illegal immigrants who will accept them.
“Their bill is a legal impossibility and a political fantasy,” Kobach told The Associated Press. “I don’t take it personally at all.”
The Obama administration has been fighting the immigration law for two years, citing that the maximum-enforcement regulations are a conflict with federal government policies and ignite racial profile among Hispanics.
Despite the varying stances, Kobach believes immigration will be a top priority after this year’s legislative elections, which will determine whether Kansas joins the trend.
“One thing we know, and that is that lots of legislators will walk their districts again,” Kobach told the AP. “I am absolutely 100 percent certain that immigration will be one of the top two or three things.”